Gargi Awards 2022 Celebration by the Hindu Council of Australia 


By Rekha Rajvanshi


Despite the rain, the Sydney community gathered to honour remarkable, high-achieving women at the Gargi Awards 2022 on Saturday, March 26th, 2022, as part of International Women’s Day.

The award is named after Rishi Gargi, an ancient Indian philosopher who is regarded as the world’s first female philosopher, Gargi Vachaknavi (c. 7th century BCE). In Vedic Literature, she is revered as a great expounder of eternal truth. She is also credited with writing numerous hymns in the Rigveda.

Surinder Jain, National Vice President, HCA and the founder of the awards said, ‘Gargi Awards were established in 2018 and the inaugural award was handed as part of the Parramasala festival that year. He added that the award’s goal is to empower women by honouring those who have made significant contributions to Australian society and who serve as positive role models for young women growing up in the country.’

Surinder Jain honouring the Gargi Award trophy

Nominations were accepted online, as in previous years, and each nominee’s application was judged by a panel of three independent and renowned female judges. Lynda Ben-Menashe, Dianne North, OAM, and Rosemary Kariuki, widely known as ‘Big Mama Rosemary’, were among the judges this year.

Joseph La Posta with Kashmiri Pandit

Many remarkable ladies were honoured with awards. Mrs. Saraswathi Shashi won the Gargi Award in Education, Science, and Research; Dr. Preetam Ganu won in Arts, Language, and Culture; Mrs. Niru Patel won in Community Services; and Dr. Sudha Natrajan won in Age Care. Mrs. Nikhila Kiran in Performing Arts, Mrs. Rani Hayman in Journalism, Ms. Shivani Mehta in Sports, while Mrs. Remya Ramesh defence service.

The award came in the form of a commendation letter and was given out in several categories. HCA received a large number of nominations, which were available to all Australian women, and this year’s winners were from NSW, SA, VIC, and WA.

Mr Joseph La Posta, CEO NSW Multicultural, Mr Surinder Jain, National Vice President, and Mr Bhagwat Chauhan, NSW President spoke at the event. The prizes were presented by a women’s team consisting of Shobha Deshiken, Director, and Bharathi Rengarajan, Chairwoman Empowerment. Surinder, speaking at the event, said that every Hindu owes a Matru-Rinn (debt) to his daughters, who bear the burden of this male-dominated culture, to his spouse and sisters, who are insecure and undervalued, as well as his mother, who sacrifices her life in bringing them up. RJ Aparna Vats served as the event’s MC. This award was made possible with the help of Multicultural NSW, HSBC, and other sponsors.

This year’s video of the Hindu Council of Australia’s flood relief efforts in Lismore, Australia, was inspiring. At the conclusion of the felicitations, attendees were treated to a delicious meal.

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